This Land is Your Land
Saturday, November 3, 2018 at 7:30 pm
First Church Boston
66 Marlborough St. at Berkeley St.
Commemorating the 50th anniversaries of the Wild & Scenic Rivers Act and the National Trails System Act, with new music inspired by American landscapes, in collaboration with The Landscape Music Composers Network
Meet the Composers and Their music
Fairhaven Bay, inspired by the Sudbury River in Massachusetts
Award-winning American composer Oliver Caplan writes melodies that nourish our souls, offering a voice of hope in an uncertain world. Inspired by the resiliency of the human spirit and beauty of the natural world, his music celebrates stories of social justice, conservation and community.
Mr. Caplan’s works have been performed in over 125 performances nationwide. He has been commissioned by the Atlanta Chamber Players, Bella Piano Trio, Bronx Arts Ensemble, Brookline Symphony Orchestra, Columbia University Wind Ensemble, El Sistema Somerville and New Hampshire Master Chorale, among others. Winner of a Special Citation for the American Prize in Orchestral Composition, additional recognitions include two Veridian Symphony Competition Wins, the Fifth House Ensemble Competition Grand Prize, seven ASCAP Awards, and fellowships at VCCA and the Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts.
Recordings of Mr. Caplan’s music include his 2017 release with Juventas You Are Not Alone, 2012 debut album Illuminations, 2015 EP Moon Over Appalachia, and a track on the Sinfonietta of Riverdale’s 2016 album New World Serenade (Albany Records). Mr. Caplan is the Artistic Director of Juventas New Music Ensemble. He holds degrees from Dartmouth College and the Boston Conservatory, is a voting member of the Recording Academy, and resides in Medford, Massachusetts.
Read more at OliverCaplan.com
Listen to a sample work on SoundCloud
New work inspired by the Scott River in California
Linda J. Chase is a composer and improvising flutist. She has collaborated with poet Jane Hirshfield for a concert of music and poetry, received a fellowship from the Japan Foundation to explore the relationship between sound and silence, and spent a month as Artist in Residence at the Grand Canyon. Ms. Chase works a Professor of music at Berklee College of Music, and leads the Interdisciplinary Ensemble at New England Conservatory. Her interest in interdisciplinary arts has led her to write a book on musical collaboration called, Painting Music, Dancing Poems. She is currently working on her PhD in Sustainability through Music Education focusing on Ecomusicology and holds degrees from Evergreen State College, Berklee College of Music and New England Conservatory of Music.
She is the founder and director of her own collaborative new music group Wild Garden Chamber Ensemble, which seeks to transcend traditional boundaries of composition, improvisation, poetry and visual expression. She is currently pursuing Spiritual Ecology through Music and has been composing pieces for chamber groups to bring light to issues of environmental and social injustice. Ms. Chase has written for many chamber combinations, choir, spoken word, jazz songs and has recorded 6 CDs of original music. She also leads women’s music and nature retreats.
Read more at www.lindajchasemusic.com
Listen to a sample work on YouTube
Nell Shaw Cohen
New York, NY
Retrace, inspired by the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail in California and Arizona
Nell Shaw Cohen evokes natural landscapes, visual art, and the lives of mavericks and artists in lyrical works from orchestral tone poems to mobile apps. Cohen is Founder & Director of the Landscape Music Composers Network. She has been commissioned by Houston Grand Opera to write a “feminist rodeo opera” with librettist Megan Cohen for HGOco’s Song of Houston chamber opera initiative. Her current opera Mabel’s Call was presented in workshops with Fort Worth Opera, American Opera Projects, and The Harwood Museum of Art, and will be given a workshop production by the University of New Mexico. Upcoming projects include commissions from Boston’s Skylark Vocal Ensemble and Santa Fe’s Montage Music Society.
Cohen has been Artist-in-Residence at the Brush Creek Foundation, Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, and New York University Symphony. She is an alumna of AOP’s Composers & the Voice fellowship and the New Dramatists Composer-Librettist Studio. She studied composition at NYU and New England Conservatory with Herschel Garfein, Michael Gandolfi, et al. Her honors have included the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Graduate Arts Award, NEC’s Chadwick Medal, and the Ellen Taaffe Zwilich Prize from the International Alliance for Women in Music. She lives in New York City.
Read more at www.nellshawcohen.com
Listen to a sample work at www.nellshawcohen.com/refuge
One Mountain, inspired by Mount Monadnock in New Hampshire
Heather Gilligan’s music has been described as honest, direct, and compassionate while exploring emotions from humor to anguish. Her recent successes include the release of her debut album, Living in Light, on the Albany Records label last spring; premieres of her choral, wind band, and orchestral music at the New York Choral Festival in Carnegie Hall and the Washington D.C. International Music Festival at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; and publication of her award-winning work for solo flute in the SCI Journal of Music Scores. Jonathan Blumhofer (The Arts Fuse) described her CD as “a new album that capably demonstrates that the art song is not only alive and well but thriving in the early decades of the 21st century.” She is a member of the Boston Composers Coalition, a group of seven composers dedicated to the creation, performance, education, and dissemination of new American music. On faculty at Keene State College in New Hampshire, she serves as department chair and oversees the areas of theory, aural skills, and composition. She received her DMA in composition from Boston University, her MM from the Longy School of Music, and a BS in chemistry from Lehigh University.
Read more at www.heathergilligan.com
Listen to a sample work on SoundCloud
San Marcos, TX
Big Sky, Low Horizon, inspired by an Ansel Adams photograph
Praised by The New York Times for his “polished orchestration” that “glitters, from big-shoulders brass to eerily floating strings,” Michael Ippolito’s music has been performed by leading musicians in venues around the world. Drawing on a rich musical background of classical and folk music, and taking inspiration from visual art, literature and other art forms, Ippolito has forged a distinctive musical voice in a body of work spanning orchestral, chamber and vocal music.
His orchestral music has been conducted by Edo de Waart, Marin Alsop, Michael Francis, David Alan Miller, and Jeffrey Milarsky in performances by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the Nashville Symphony, the Florida Orchestra, the Cabrillo Festival Orchestra, the Albany Symphony Orchestra and the Juilliard Orchestra.
He has received commissions from numerous organizations, including Carnegie Hall and The ASCAP Foundation, Chamber Music America, the University of Georgia Wind Ensemble, ensemble 20/21 in Cologne, and the New York Choreographic Institute.
Ippolito is currently Assistant Professor of Composition at Texas State University. He studied with John Corigliano at The Juilliard School and with Joel Hoffman and Michael Fiday at the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.
Read more at www.michaelippolito.com
Listen to a sample work on YouTube
Wild Beauty, inspired by the North Country National Scenic Trail in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and North Dakota
Libby Meyer is a composer of concert, theater dance and film music. Her interest in natural soundscapes, conservation of special places and curiosity about the relationship between the arts and the natural world fuel her work. She is a co-founder of the Keweenaw Soundscape Project established to aurally document the Keweenaw region and surrounding lands for ecological, social and artistic value. She has served as an Artist in Residence at Isle Royale National Park and the Visby International Center for Composers, in Visby, Sweden. She has received grants and awards from National Endowment for the Arts, The Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, The Sorel Foundation, The American Composers Forum and the Wyatt Fund.
Libby and her husband live on a small farm in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula surrounded by the choruses of sandhill cranes, woodcocks and spring peepers depending upon the season. Despite winters that regularly deliver over 300” of snow, they plant a large garden, raise honeybees and maintain a small apple and cherry orchard.
Libby holds a DMA in music composition from Northwestern University in Chicago and is currently a Lecturer in Music Theory/Composition.
Read more and listen to sample works at libbymeyermusic.com
The Edge of the Marsh, inspired by the Rachel Carson National Recreation Trail in Maine
Rachel Panitch is a Boston-based violinist, improviser, composer, and teaching artist. She has been an artist-in-residence in neighborhoods, in schools, and in Zion and Acadia National Parks. Rachel performs Classical music with the Cardamom Quartet, is a dance fiddler with French Roast, and weaves stories with Thread Ensemble (an improvisatory trio of violins, voices and vibraphone) and with Grammy award-winner Bill Harley. Rachel’s music is featured on a PBS Utah Bucket List episode, and the National Park Service’s “100 Years of Arts in the Parks” video series.
Rachel specializes in teaching improvisation and fiddling, and works regularly with a number of music education organizations and schools around Massachusetts and Rhode Island. In 2009, Rachel founded Rhode Island Fiddle Project, a free music program teaching traditional fiddle and dance music to students ages 7-17, and is currently a Resident Musician with performance and education organization, musiConnects. In 2015 she was chosen as a Jubilation Fellow, a national award recognizing “individuals with an exceptional talent for helping young people feel fully alive through rhythm."
Rachel received her Masters of Music in Contemporary Improvisation from New England Conservatory, and holds a BA in Anthropology from Vassar College.
Read more at www.rachelpanitch.com
Listen to a sample work on Bandcamp
Ann Arbor, MI
Aurora, inspired by Acadia National Park in Maine
Praised for his “sophisticated writing...and intriguing rhythms” (GTM), Ari Sussman (b. 1993) is an award-winning pianist and composer of vocal, chamber, orchestral, choral, and electronic music. His compositions have been performed throughout the United States and Europe, and by ensembles such as The Chicago Ensemble, the KC VITAs Chamber Choir, American Modern Ensemble, Inventio Music, Zemer Chai, among others. Sussman's music illustrates equivocal worlds of sounds that are ethereal and euphonious in nature.
Sussman has won the American Composers Forum: Philadelphia Chapter: Young Composers Scholarship, two Honorable Mentions for the Guild of Temple Musicians Young Composers Award, the Boston Philharmonic Youth Orchestra Young Composers Initiative, and the KC VITAs Chamber Choir Composition Competition. Sussman is a two-time finalist for the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composers Award, and his orchestral work Kol Galgal was a recipient of a 2018 BMI Student Composer Award.
Sussman received his Bachelor of Music and Master of Music with Honors in Composition from the New England Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Michael Gandolfi and Kati Agócs and received the Donald Martino Award for Excellence in Composition. He is currently pursuing the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Composition at the University of Michigan.
Read more at www.arisussman.com
Listen to a sample work on YouTube